As we proceed with the offseason team activities (OTAs, otherwise known as “let the coach see that you’re in shape” time), it’s safe to say that the San Francisco 49ers are going to capture a lot of attention as a serious Super Bowl contender.
Well, they should be. Among the six NFC playoff teams last year, no defense matched that of the Niners. And if the Niners were able to manufacture one slipped tackle in the fourth quarter that led to a sizable gain against the Giants, which would have led to a game-winning field goal by David Akers, there’s a very good chance that we’d be calling this year’s Niner team defending champions, not serious contenders.
Compliments are nice, but it still takes players making plays. That’s why they play the games. Here, in descending order, are the 10 49ers who will be most responsible for a very successful 2012.